Killer bokeh, from your iPhone? Yup!

I’m a bokeh junkie. I’ve loved it from the first day I realized I had a passion for photography. Looking through magazines and websites, I always loved shallow depth of field. I loved the way it isolated a subject in 3-dimensional space. To me, shallow depth of field, separated the amateurs from the pros.

As professional photographers we scoff at the notion that a camera phone could possibly compete with our really super expensive, fast aperture lenses. Well, through the power of interpolative and computational photography, digital bokeh has been unleashed on your camera phones. Now, it’s not perfect, but it’s pretty darn good!

Maximize shallow depth of field in your portraits

To get started, open your iPhone’s Camera app and select Portrait Mode. Then take a photo.

Then, select Edit. You’ll see the screen below. On the upper lefthand corner is an f-stop number. The default is f/4.5, but when you click on this, you can digitally change the f-stop.

Select Edit and this screen comes up. On the upper left hand corner is an f number. The default is f/4.5. When you select that, you can digitally change the f-stop.

Since I’m a bokeh junkie, I like to slide the f-stop number all the way to the left, which gives you a digital depth of field equivalent of f/1.4. It’s not perfect, but I think it looks pretty darn good.

You can see on the camera right side of his neck, the computational algorithm can’t differentiate between where is neck ends and the background begins. This wouldn’t happen with actual optics, but you can see that by using Portrait Mode and adjusting the aperture after you take the photo can be useful.

Now it’s your turn

Want more professional looking results with your iPhone? Trying rocking the aperture in post while editing your images. Sound off in the comments below with your experiences!